Greater Doppelganger

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Just a quick question. Where is Greater Doppelganger (Bookwise)?
Never heard of it. The doppelgänger can be found in MM1 and Races of Dedtiny, though.
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I do, however, have one last lesson on this subject. That last one? The only build in this post that can one-shot average opponents[by dealing twice as much damage as they have HP? I would argue that it is not optimized. Why isn't it optimized? Because it's overkill. Overkill is NOT optimizing. This means that there are portions of this build dedicated to damage which can safely be removed and thrown elsewhere. For example, you probably don't need both Leap Attack AND Headlong Rush at the same time. You could pick up Extra Rage feats for stamina, feats to support AoO effects, feats that work towards potential prestige classes, and so on. However, you could also shift our ability scores around somewhat. I mean, if you're getting results like that with 16 starting Strength, maybe you can lower it to 14, and free up four points to spend somewhere else - perhaps back into Charisma, giving you some oomph for Intimidating Rage or Imperious Command if you want. You can continue to tune this until it deals "enough" damage - and that "enough" does not need to be "100%". It could easily be, say, 80% (leaving the rest to the team), if your DM is the sort who would ban one-hit killers.
Tempest_Stormwind on Character Optimization
So when do you think Bachmann will be saying she met a mother the previous night that had a son who got a blood transfusion using a gay guy's blood, and now the son is retardedly gay?
When she meets CJ's mom?
Resident Pithed-Off Dragon Poon Slayer of the House of Trolls
Monsters of Faerun, pg 35
 
 This is a 3rd edition book though which I don't believe was ever updated to 3.5 so there would be some adjustments that would have to be made to use it using 3.5 rules.
Monsters of Faerun, pg 35
 
 This is a 3rd edition book though which I don't believe was ever updated to 3.5 so there would be some adjustments that would have to be made to use it using 3.5 rules.



Such as burning it with fire for starters. >.<

That thing is stupid strong for it's CR (12).
Such as burning it with fire for starters. >.<

That thing is stupid strong for it's CR (12).

I don't know about it being all that strong.

Its best ability is being able to consume and use identities, and that depends on it eating the brain of a creature that it has already beaten.  Sure, the DM could arbitrarily give it extra power from the brain of an unusually powerful victim, but I wouldn't call that part of its normal CR.

The kraken stirs. And ten billion sushi dinners cry out for vengeance. - Good Omens

Co-Author of the Dreamfane, Euralden Eye, Gajuisan Crawler, Gruesome Lurker, Fulminating Crab, Ironglass Rose, Sheengrass Swarm, Spryjack, Usunag, and Warp Drifter, and author of the Magmal Horror from Force of Nature.

My most popular campaign item; for all your adventuring convenience.
Zauber's Mutable Rod: This rod has a number of useful functions that make it easier to live in the wilderness. It is made of polished wood, with five studlike buttons on one end. Each button produces a different effect when pressed. Unless otherwise noted, the rod’s functions have no limit on the number of times they can be employed. When button 1 is pressed, one end of the rod produces a small flame, equivalent to a candle. When button 2 is pressed, the rod unfolds into a two-person tent, complete with bedrolls and warm blankets. When button 3 is pressed, the rod becomes a one-handed hammer, suitable for pounding pitons into a wall. When button 4 is pressed, the rod becomes a sturdy iron spade. When button 5 is pressed, the rod becomes a wooden bucket able to hold 2 gallons of liquid. Once per day, it can be commanded to fill with fresh water. If the rod is seriously damaged or broken in any of its alternate forms (button 2, 3, 4, or 5), it reverts to its basic rod form and cannot be activated for 24 hours. Moderate conjuration; CL 9th; Craft Rod, minor creation; Price 375 gp; Weight 2 lb.
Such as burning it with fire for starters. >.<

That thing is stupid strong for it's CR (12).

I don't know about it being all that strong.

Its best ability is being able to consume and use identities, and that depends on it eating the brain of a creature that it has already beaten.  Sure, the DM could arbitrarily give it extra power from the brain of an unusually powerful victim, but I wouldn't call that part of its normal CR.



I think the real nastiness of it comes from potential polymorph shinanigens at the hands of players. The thing only has 9 HD if I recall, meaning it could easily be a favored form of a master transmogrifist (complete arcane if you're unaware of the class specifics). Combining the ability to gain class abilities via the ingestion of a brain only gets worse when you use the class to combine it with the base abilities of an elder brain of thoon (15 HD if I recall, making it just fit the bill for another favored form) who has a natural brain extract ability (if not a regular mindflayer form, ana ulitharid would work just fine). I'm sure I can think of other ways just letting that thing exist in a game can make things complicating for a DM, but I'd rather not think about it.

I suppose if you have players that aren't tempted to use such outlandish methods it would be fun flavor for a game, but I've seen to many seemingly week monsters with odd powers like it abused to be comfortable with using it myself.

EDIT: Just checked the elder brain of thoon out, it doesn't have an extract ability, but it does have some nasty selections unto itself.
The master transmogrifist is slowed down on their access to supernatural abilities by their delayed casting, and it wouldn't really combine with their prestige class abilities (since the consumed forms aren't favoured shapes, and consume identity isn't one of the specified spells).

You'd find more abuse with it through just regular shapechange, and you could access it earlier with something like Assume Supernatural Ability, but it still ultimately depends on you killing a Medium humanoid victim who is strong enough to be useful (and on doing that on a daily basis, since you'll lose your collected personalities every time your greater doppelganger form runs out).

The kraken stirs. And ten billion sushi dinners cry out for vengeance. - Good Omens

Co-Author of the Dreamfane, Euralden Eye, Gajuisan Crawler, Gruesome Lurker, Fulminating Crab, Ironglass Rose, Sheengrass Swarm, Spryjack, Usunag, and Warp Drifter, and author of the Magmal Horror from Force of Nature.

My most popular campaign item; for all your adventuring convenience.
Zauber's Mutable Rod: This rod has a number of useful functions that make it easier to live in the wilderness. It is made of polished wood, with five studlike buttons on one end. Each button produces a different effect when pressed. Unless otherwise noted, the rod’s functions have no limit on the number of times they can be employed. When button 1 is pressed, one end of the rod produces a small flame, equivalent to a candle. When button 2 is pressed, the rod unfolds into a two-person tent, complete with bedrolls and warm blankets. When button 3 is pressed, the rod becomes a one-handed hammer, suitable for pounding pitons into a wall. When button 4 is pressed, the rod becomes a sturdy iron spade. When button 5 is pressed, the rod becomes a wooden bucket able to hold 2 gallons of liquid. Once per day, it can be commanded to fill with fresh water. If the rod is seriously damaged or broken in any of its alternate forms (button 2, 3, 4, or 5), it reverts to its basic rod form and cannot be activated for 24 hours. Moderate conjuration; CL 9th; Craft Rod, minor creation; Price 375 gp; Weight 2 lb.
The master transmogrifist is slowed down on their access to supernatural abilities by their delayed casting, and it wouldn't really combine with their prestige class abilities (since the consumed forms aren't favoured shapes, and consume identity isn't one of the specified spells).



I'll agree that the caster decrease is a slight road bump, but in terms of just plain caster level it's easily made up for with practiced spell caster, otherwise yes the lack of spell advancement can hurt. However as a favored form the power mostly lay in the ability to pick and chose from another monsters ability to add on to it, I.E. a mindflayers extract+Consume Indetity=instant ilithid savant. Like you said (below) it would require the use of assume supernatural ability in the first place to work that early a level but it still leaves the option open.

You'd find more abuse with it through just regular shapechange, and you could access it earlier with something like Assume Supernatural Ability, but it still ultimately depends on you killing a Medium humanoid victim who is strong enough to be useful (and on doing that on a daily basis, since you'll lose your collected personalities every time your greater doppelganger form runs out).



This is where shenanigans can kick in and get really nasty. As a caster you can get things like charm-X/dominate-X in order to get people to do things that seem harmless enough ("hey, spend the night over at my place tonight" proceed to cope de grace sleeping person and then eat brain) but another thing that could happen is what I will handily refer to as "the world map effect". If you've ever played any RPG that involves travailing a world map (a classic example is the final fantasy series) generally the adventuring party is represented by the lead roles avatar, so essentially the entire party is riding around inside of him. In the case of a person using polymorph abuse if the party has one cleric and a few scrolls of revivify the offender could easily just eat the brains of his party members and then have them resurrected effectively carrying the abilities of the party inside of him (minus the cleric). Granted as you said all the stuff you get is limited but still, I feal it can be abused by people who look for it.
If you're already dominating people, eating their brains to make use of their abilities is adding an unnecessary step, especially since the dominate effects last a lot longer than the shapechanging ones.  I mean, it's probably adding a level of fun, but in terms of the benefits, it seems like you'd end up using more powerful effects to access less powerful ones.

Mind you, it would be easier to evaluate if the consume identity ability was clearer about what it was actually doing in terms of game mechanics.

The kraken stirs. And ten billion sushi dinners cry out for vengeance. - Good Omens

Co-Author of the Dreamfane, Euralden Eye, Gajuisan Crawler, Gruesome Lurker, Fulminating Crab, Ironglass Rose, Sheengrass Swarm, Spryjack, Usunag, and Warp Drifter, and author of the Magmal Horror from Force of Nature.

My most popular campaign item; for all your adventuring convenience.
Zauber's Mutable Rod: This rod has a number of useful functions that make it easier to live in the wilderness. It is made of polished wood, with five studlike buttons on one end. Each button produces a different effect when pressed. Unless otherwise noted, the rod’s functions have no limit on the number of times they can be employed. When button 1 is pressed, one end of the rod produces a small flame, equivalent to a candle. When button 2 is pressed, the rod unfolds into a two-person tent, complete with bedrolls and warm blankets. When button 3 is pressed, the rod becomes a one-handed hammer, suitable for pounding pitons into a wall. When button 4 is pressed, the rod becomes a sturdy iron spade. When button 5 is pressed, the rod becomes a wooden bucket able to hold 2 gallons of liquid. Once per day, it can be commanded to fill with fresh water. If the rod is seriously damaged or broken in any of its alternate forms (button 2, 3, 4, or 5), it reverts to its basic rod form and cannot be activated for 24 hours. Moderate conjuration; CL 9th; Craft Rod, minor creation; Price 375 gp; Weight 2 lb.
Looking into it I kind of see your point on the actual statistics of the ability being vague. I would assume class abilities since it explicitly mentions the lack of cleric spell casting past level 2 spells, but it's access is restricted if the creature acts outside of alignment standards, so i suppose it balances itself out.
If you're already dominating people, eating their brains to make use of their abilities is adding an unnecessary step, especially since the dominate effects last a lot longer than the shapechanging ones.  I mean, it's probably adding a level of fun, but in terms of the benefits, it seems like you'd end up using more powerful effects to access less powerful ones.

Mind you, it would be easier to evaluate if the consume identity ability was clearer about what it was actually doing in terms of game mechanics.

Mind switch for keeps. Problem solved
Customer Disservice of the House of Trolls Resident Secretly Ron Paul God of Spite and Sloth
Can't you get Assume Supernatural ability and Racial Emulation on a Changeling for "Illithid Savant" at level 1?
Edit: Flaw for bonus feat.